The Cleveland Cavaliers, guided by Israeli coach David Blatt still in his first year in the NBA, have defied all odds in their run for the NBA Championship despite being short of several of their top players, but those championship dreams are now one game from the brink.
The Cavs lost 104-91 to the Golden State Warriors on Sunday in Game 5, as the Warriors enjoyed a home court advantage and took the series to 3-2, placing them one game away from title glory.
Tuesday night will see Game 6 held in Cleveland, as the Cavs struggle to keep their hopes alive and force a Game 7.
Stephen Curry led the Warriors, netting 37 points along with seven rebounds and four assists, with one of his strongest performances in the Finals.
He was outshone by the Cavs' star LeBron James, who tallied staggering figures in nearly every stat: 40 points, 14 boards, 11 assists and clutch plays at every turn.
But his one-man spectacle wasn't enough to change the Cavs' fate, as the absence of Kyrie Irvin, Kevin Love and Anderson Varejao made its mark felt with the lack of back-up scoring firepower.
Regardless of whether the Cavs pull off an historic comeback, James is set to make history as he reportedly is on track to become the first player in NBA history to average over 35 points, ten rebounds and five assists in the NBA Finals.
Blatt has been a center of media attention in Israel, given his enormous contribution to Israeli basketball seen in his repeated Euroleague championship wins with Maccabi Tel Aviv.
After the Game 4 loss, an Israeli reporter asked Blatt what he had to say to Israelis who woke in the middle of the night to watch the game, to which he responded wryly, "when I got seven million people waking up and then feeling bad all day because we didn't win, you know that's a heck of a thing to carry around all day."